the only one who stays by my side is the blonde girl. jenny moves to houston to be "roomates" with pat. everywhere i go, i am haunted by dark water. wherever i stay, pools of black water flood the uninhabited rooms, encroaching on where i am till i must flee again with the girl in white, hand in hand. she was ritually raped by her father for many years, with her mother's knowledge, until the three of them were in a fatal car crash. i caught the girl by the face, in a mask, & kept her from dying, from passing on to the places of the dead. but now she is decomposing, leaving handfuls of ash about the apartment, unknowingly, dribbling soot on the seat of chairs, at the dinner table. i spend nights up late, up to my ankles in cold water, arguing on the telephone with jenny, my ex-girlfriend. i go to bed & worry about the pale girl's slow dying, about her disolving like sugar in the dark waves. disolved, like honey in tea, like salt in milk. eventually i get a phone call. the voice on the other end is her dead father, the warlock. he calls me creature, he tells me that he'll save her on two conditions. one, i get mtv as soon as i get off the phone, & two that i hand the phone to his daughter with no questions asked. i hand the phone to her & start trying to get the cable company on my cell phone, before he changes his mind.